Toward the 1,000 dollars human genome.
Revolutionary new technologies, capable of transforming the economics of sequencing, are providing an unparalleled opportunity to analyze human genetic variation comprehensively at the whole-genome level within a realistic timeframe and at affordable costs. Current estimates suggest that it would cost somewhere in the region of 30 million US dollars to sequence an entire human genome using Sanger-based sequencing, and on one machine it would take about 60 years. Solexa is widely regarded as a company with the necessary disruptive technology to be the first to achieve the ultimate goal of the so-called 1,000 dollars human genome - the conceptual cost-point needed for routine analysis of individual genomes. Solexa's technology is based on completely novel sequencing chemistry capable of sequencing billions of individual DNA molecules simultaneously, a base at a time, to enable highly accurate, low cost analysis of an entire human genome in a single experiment. When applied over a large enough genomic region, these new approaches to resequencing will enable the simultaneous detection and typing of known, as well as unknown, polymorphisms, and will also offer information about patterns of linkage disequilibrium in the population being studied. Technological progress, leading to the advent of single-molecule-based approaches, is beginning to dramatically drive down costs and increase throughput to unprecedented levels, each being several orders of magnitude better than that which is currently available. A new sequencing paradigm based on single molecules will be faster, cheaper and more sensitive, and will permit routine analysis at the whole-genome level.